Local economic problems are overshadowed by the worsening national crisis over slavery. The election of Abraham Lincoln leads to secession in the Deep South, which Virginia and the other Border States resist. President Lincoln's effort to resupply Fort Sumter prompts Confederate forces to bombard the fort into surrender, and Lincoln's subsequent call for troops to suppress the rebellion finally moves Virginia to secede. Appomattox County votes unanimously to leave the Union, and prominent citizens start raising troops to defend against the anticipated invasion by Union forces. Appomattox companies take part in early fighting in western Virginia and at Bull Run, and early in 1862 a new conscription law begins forcing all but the wealthier citizens of military age into the army.
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